Lots of people are gonna have their volcano stories, travel travails and ruined trip stories, stranded because of ash in the stratosphere stories…, mine is I went to Rome to do some sketching, Stephanie sent me there, as a birthday present, so as I could get stuck into some uninterrupted work and before leaving for the airport, she said to me from England, “Don’t worry if you haven’t done as much as you want to, you’ll be going back.” She didn’t mean the same day!
Considered getting a train but was so expensive thought I would wait to get the next available flight. Didn’t know Rome (and Madrid) was where everyone flying to Europe was going to be landing. When I realised the situation wasn’t going to improve very quickly I went back to the station. By then it was jammed solid and had to queue for seven hours to get to the ticket desk by which time the only way to get north out of Italy was by a much more circuitious route that by where of the fare had pretty much doubled.
Well, once I’d adjusted to things I got back to drawing but, apart from missing the teaching I was scheduled for, there’s an exhibition I’m taking part in, opening tonight in Cologne, and so here I am. Journey was fun, went to the morning market in Rome ‘n’ stocked-up with provisions, shared it out at lunch-time, in international company, as the train wended its way through Switzerland – a panoramic picnic – out of the window, alpine lakes, snow-capped peaks, flower-filled fields and apple trees in blossom… don’t get that on the aeroplane.
So that was all because of the old roman god, Vulcan, and his not wanting the northern Europeans to have Ariel carry them anywhere – or maybe it was Iceland’s revenge on those same governments who’ve done a Versaille-like number on the poor pöpulation there aiming to skin them forever for their banks’ financial meltdown. Sorry, slight deviation there from the story, will have to tell you later, about m’sketching trip to Rome.